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The Role of Jordanian Local Community in Marketing Tourism

The Role of Jordanian Local Community in Marketing Tourism

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Published by: drahmad764 on May 07, 2013
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 Journal of Business Studies Quarterly2011, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 42-49
ISSN 2152-1034
 
The Role of Jordanian Local Community in Marketing Tourism
Ahmad Zamil, King Saud University, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Abstract
This research aims at highlighting the role of Jordanian local community in developing tourismin Jordan through collaborative efforts and encouraging the governmental agencies to attract tourists from around the world. Knowledge about tourism sites is very important in this aspect. And managing tourism marketing must be shared between the government and the localcommunities, especially in providing tourist jobs for the individuals who are living near thetourist's sites. The research showed that the Jordanian citizens have a good knowledge about tourism in Jordan, which helps in the development of this sector.
  Key words
: Marketing Tourism, Jordan, Marketing Management.
Introduction
The World Tourism Organization (WTO) has defined tourism as '' the activities of personstraveling to and staying in places outside their usual environment for not more than oneconsecutive year for leisure, business and other purposes'' (Rowe et al, 2002).The length of time spent by tourists in the host country, or to repeat his visit to the countryitself depends on several factors, one of them is the concerted efforts of official agencies, andthrough non-official bodies to sustain the beautiful memories in the mind of tourists for thetourist site in particular and the country as a whole in general. This can be achieved throughpopular festivals and the daily coexistence with tourists by the local population, to make themfeel that they are worthy to welcome them (Silva, 2004).The Jordanian citizen must understand that tourism is one of Jordan's fastest growingindustries. Historically and scenically, the Hashemite kingdom of Jordan is rich in attractions forthe tourists, and Jordanian traditions are the heritage of most of the civilized world. And formany factors particularly those related to the monotheistic religions to visit Jordan became thespiritual nature. In the hills area, west of the Jordan River within the districts of JerusalemNablus, stand shrines sacred to the followers of monotheistic religions in the world. On the EastBank there are three internationally prized tourist sites, Petra, Wadi Rumm and Jerash, thetourist can reach all these sites easily through several roads from Amman or from other regionsin Jordan.
 
 Journal of Business Studies Quarterly2011, Vol. 2, No. 3, pp. 42-49
©JBSQ 2011
33On the other hand, Amman offers the double pleasure to modern living, in a choice of hotelsapproved by the ministry of tourism. We can say that Jordan is one of the countries that haveantiquities, ruins and tourist sites for many cultures and religions through the history.And this paper will focus on a very important point which is do all the Jordanian citizens have agood knowledge about the tourist sites in the country? And how they use this knowledge in themarketing of tourism in Jordan.
The value of religious tourism to Jordan
 Jordan is exceptionally blessed in number and concentration of its holy sites and memories.Across the countries the faithful of the three great monotheistic religions, have made their wayhere to follow in the steps of prophets, or visit the scene of Christ's ministry .every foot of thecountry has a familiar story to tell.The visitor can read this history, either for Christians or Muslims as a culture or as a religion.For Christians, the sanctuaries of Jerusalem are held in deepest reverence, the church of the holysepulcher in the heart of the old city was originally built by Roman emperor Constantine.Another location is Madaba, this city, '' Muslims and Christians are toiling round- the- clock to brace for Monday's much awaited visit of Pope John II as part of a pilgrimage to the holyland ( Jordan Times, 2002). On the first Papal tour to the holy land in 36 years , is expected tovisit the sanctuary of Siyyegne on mount Neto, near Madaba, these and others are only examplesabout the holy land and holy sites for Christians in Jordan. On the other hand, Jerusalem is thethird holy city on earth, for Muslims after Mecca and Medina in Hejaz. Jerusalem involves, Al-Aqsa, Dome of the Rock, Al-Haram Esh Sherif and Salah Adin Minbar. The small village of Mazar, nine miles to the south of Karak, encompasses a mosque of two domes and two highminarets; this mosque was built over the tomb of Ja'afar Ibn Abu Talib, cousin of ProphetMohammed, who was killed in the battle between Muslims and Byzantine armies. Nearby aretwo other domes built over the tombs of two leaders killed in the same battle, Abdullah IbnRawaha, and Zaid Ibn Haritha. In the Jordan valley there are several domes and tombs built forMuslim leaders, the most famous being that the great general Abu Obeidah, companion of theprophet. So, are these sites are known for the Jordanian citizens and are they interested in theirreligious and historical values?
Tourism in Jordan
Tourism in one of the important sectors of the Jordanian economy, as the number of arrivalsto the kingdom in 2008, six million, three million of them for touristic purposes, and the totaltourism revenue in the same year as adjusted three billion dollars. The tourism income in theyear 1999 was not exceeding 564 million dinars. The table below shows the development of tourism sector in Jordan represented by tourism revenue for the year 2002-2009.
Years Tourism Revenue Years Tourism Revenue
2002 743 million 2006 1.164 billion2003 752.6 million 2007 1.638 billion2004 943 million 2008 2.089 billion2005 1 billion 2009 2.064 billion
Source
: Jordanian Ministry of tourism, 2010.
Since 1998, the task of marketing the tourism product in Jordan entrusted to the JordanTourism Board (JTB), as an independent, public private sector partnership, to benefit from the
 
© Ahmad Zamil
34marketing strategies for the brand, and promote Jordan tourism product, to become a preferredoption in global markets. And it is known that private sector organization, whether owned byindividuals, or in the form of companies, are part of the community, and, therefore, theresearcher finds that the decision to establish the Jordan Tourism Board was the right decision,because it has allowed the community to participate actively in marketing tourism in Jordan.Through examining the adopted strategies , one can find that they are represent the actualdirections of the Jordan tourism product in terms of the tourist purposes, cultural , natural ,religious m adventurous , leisure and MICE destination ( Jordan Tourism Board , Website ).Since the mission of the Jordan Tourism Board is to lead the branding, promoting andpositioning of Jordan as a destination of choice, the JTB implements an integrated program of international promotional activities such as, participation in trade fairs, trade workshops, tradeand consumer road shows, familiarization trips, press trip, brochure and multimedia production,and media relations. In order to achieve its goals, JTB utilize the services of eleven offices inEurope and North America (www.visitjordan.com).Jordanian tourist attractions vary to include, historical sites like Petra as one of the newseven wonders of the world, Jordan river, mount Nebo, Madaba and numerous mediaevalmosques and churches, and natural locations such as, Wadi Rum, Dana nature reserves, Azraqwetland reserve and others.In the locations such as, Umm Qais, Jerash, Al Karak, Amman and Umm Al-Jimal,where there are archeological attractive features, belonging to the Romanian, Byzantine andIslamic culture. In addition to the health tourism which is focused in the Dead Sea and Maien,and the religious tourism as mentioned early. But the question that arises now is: is it sufficientto the existence of these features, for marketing tourism in Jordan?
Tourism Marketing Mix
Tourism marketing mix nowadays characterized in complexity high cost and the difficulty of selection the components. McManus (2010) has argued that the elements high cost in tourismmarketing mix are: - branding, which may include brand name, product name, logo, tagline, keymessages, byline and photography.-
 
marketing collateral ( banners, brochures, flyers, signs and posters) and this includes costsuch as, designing of attractive for institutional statements photography and the logos ,also printing brochures cost and the cost to distribute these brochures. In this regard,some authors have suggested some means that aim to reduce the cost such as :-
 
employing inputs from less expensive resources-
 
Focus on products that do not require substantial additions, leading to cost reduction.especially the labor cost-
 
achieving economies of scale by high volume sales-
 
get attractive discount on purchases like transportation , hospitality and food (Fyall andGarrod, 2005, p.89)Internal mix elements include for example, hospitality, guest relations, quality control, personalsales and employee morale. The external mix elements, devoted to attract new customers throughoffering recreational facilities, the comfortable traveling, hotels and pricing(www.tripod.com/travel and- tourist- marketing .html). In their study entitled '' using multiplesense in tourism marketing'' (Isaccsson and Alakosk, 2009) pointed out that the marketing forcesused by tourism organization in order to achieve a targeted level of sales in a targeted market.

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